Mad Hatter Day*

I’m having a DAY, you know those kind best spent in bed? As much as I like volunteering, I despise volunteer organizations, they are usually organized by people who aren’t very organized and have never been part of any sort of result oriented organization. So, volunteer organizations spend a great deal of time and effort re-organizing themselves for better efficiency and very little time being efficient. A group I work with and feel passionately about, is being usurped by a control freak who is not me. People who disagree with the usurper are finding themselves erased from lists and passcodes have been changed. In essence I have been erased. I have been erased before, erased by my ex husband and most recently by an ex-employer, so I find being erased by a volunteer group is rather prosaic. I should just take the hint and go off the grid – how much are cabins in Idaho going for folks?

1930 – The novel As I Lay Dying, by William Faulkner, is published.

birthdays –
1950 –
David Brin, American author born

event –
NE Nebraska Book Festival – Lincoln, NE
TN – National Storytelling Festival – Jonesborough, TN
NYC – 7th New Yorker Festival – New York City, NY
CA – Litquake – San Francisco, CA

pod people • Apple is going after podcasters using the word ‘postcasting’ with a cease and desist order. So I guess they own the word ‘pod’ news to Jack Finney and his Body Snatchers.

talking head • Daniel handler buries Lemony Snicket.

super sale • Around 500 books from the late Princess Margaret’s library sold at auction.

*MadHatterDay is a holiday in October. It fills the need for a second crazy day in the year, almost exactly half a year from April Fools’ Day. The real spirit of MadHatterDay is turnabout: The nonsense we usually have to pretend is sane can be called madness for one day in the year; the superficially crazy things that really make sense can be called sane on MadHatterDay.

MadHatterDay is 10/6. The date was chosen from the illustrations by John Tenniel in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, wherein the Mad Hatter is always seen wearing a hat bearing a slip of paper with the notation “In this style 10/6”. We take this as inspiration to behave in the style of the Mad Hatter on 10/6 (which is October 6 here, although in Britain MadHatterDay occurs on June 10…but I digress…) Some astute observers have noted that the paper in the Mad Hatter’s Hat was really an order to make a hat in the style shown, to cost ten shillings sixpence. However, it is well known that Time Is Money, and therefore Money Is Time, and therefore 10/6 may as well be the sixth of October.

MadHatterDay began in Boulder, CO, in 1986, among some computer folk who had nothing better to do. It was immediately recognized as valuable because they caused less damage than if they’d been doing their jobs. It was announced that first year on computer networks. In 1987 it gained minor local recognition. In 1988, it was first recognized as an official holiday by an area business, and also received its first national press coverage by news services (who are always desperate for an unlikely story). It is almost certain that the national election also gave MadHatterDay a good boost in 1988.

Detailed plans for this year’s MadHatterDay observance will, of course, be announced on October 7. We have found that plans made after the fact are more accurate and much easier to have fulfilled. Or, as the Red Queen said, “sentence first, then the verdict!”

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